Written by Andrew Madaras
Photos by Liam Smith
A late winner from Kelvin Osei-Addo saw the Blues win a fifth consecutive match for the first time in years which pre-date the takeover of the Club by its fans in 2017.
The win sees the Blues climb to sixth place in the League, but with games in hand over all the clubs above them. On a points per game basis the Blues would be topping the table.
The fact that Kelvin’s 88th minute winner was necessary was testimony to some inspired goalkeeping from the Heath keeper, Connor Sansom & some resolute defending from those in front of him.
Three times in the first half the Heath defence cleared the ball off the line and on several occasions, Connor Sansom made acrobatic saves to stop Dunstable extending their one goal lead.
Joe Sellers-West pounced on a rebound from a free-kick to put the Blues ahead in the 14th minute.
Such was Dunstable’s first half dominance that even neutral observers said at half-time that the game should have been put to bed.
Colney Heath gave notice of their intent early in the second half with a well worked move which ended with the woodwork saving Dunstable’s lead.
Parity was restored on the hour mark before Kelvin Osei-Addo’s late strike which flew past Sansom into the bottom left-hand corner, to send the 60 or so Dunstable fans into wild raptures of delight.
This was the largest Dunstable away following I’d seen for a long time, and with overall attendances at home matches now over 200, the good weather and 20 mile drive made this an inviting fixture to attend.
Colney Heath were relegated last season from Step 4 and have struggled so far this season to get to grips with Step 5 football. One win from seven games explains their predicament of sitting four places above bottom club, Arlesey Town, who were the team they beat for their solitary victory.
Their problem is not at the back. They have the 6th best defence in the League. Their difficulty has been in front of goal, and have only scored three goals in the League all season.
Charlie Jones needed to get down well to keep out a free kick bent round the wall within minutes of Joe Sellers-West putting Dunstable ahead.
A couple of minutes after that Kyle Faulkner rounded Sansom and shot goalwards only for the ball to be cleared from the goalline.
Sansom made a great save a couple of minutes later from a Dunstable head following a corner. The game wasn’t even 20 minutes old, but already the spectators had received excellent value for their money.
Shortly before the half hour, Terrence Muchineripi needed to be carried from the field with a bad knee injury which is likely to keep him out for 2-3 months.
Physio, Adam Ashton’s treatment room has a growing list of players, and the wisdom of Head Coach, Joe Deeney’s decision to try and keep a squad of 20 players becomes evident.
Kelvin Osei-Addo replaced Terrence and found himself in Referee Stuart Smith’s notebook 10 minutes later. The referee cautioned six players in all, three from each side.
Kelvin brought out another great save by Sansom three minutes later following great work by Tolu Ikuyinminu.
The second half was a much more evenly contested affair. Colney Heath were kicking down the slight slope and were more of an offensive threat than the first half.
Remell Stirling was the Blues Man of the Match with a fantastic display. With Terrence’s departure, Remell took on an uncharacteristic defensive role for him but did his job superbly and won plaudits from the Blues faithful.
This was a battling team performance and all eleven players, and three substitutes earned their spurs for a gritty second half display, which although lacked the number of chances they’d created showed the absolute importance of playing right up to the 90 minutes.
Owen McConnell came on to make his debut in stoppage time. Just 17 years old, Owen didn’t flinch in the heart of the battle and won his headers and looking very much at home within the team.
Kelvin’s winner was a well-placed shot from outside the area and with defenders around him. It came too late for Colney Heath to muster any more significant attacks.
On Saturday surely the game of the day in the Premier League will be at Creasey Park, where Leighton Town are the visitors. A big crowd is expected, and fans are advised to arrive early and use the overflow car park on Brewers Hill Rd and if possible, buy tickets in advance to avoid queues at the turnstiles - dunstabletownfc.co.uk/tickets
It is not an all ticket match, cash and card admissions on the gate with normal admission prices applicable.